Genuineness is a blessing
One of the things I have deeply appreciated about our ministry at Lighthouse Baptist is the genuineness of the believers in their Christian walk. It’s not uncommon to ask a brother or sister in Christ how they are doing and have them answer along these lines: “I’m struggling with _________. Please pray with me that I will glorify God and trust Him to help me come to a biblical response.”
Bud and I were amused on our biblical studies tour to find a merchant at Ephesus who advertised ‘Genuine Fake Watches’ and the wanna be in Israel whose green coffee shop sign read ‘Stars and Bucks.’ At first glance it looked authentic, but not so!
Sometimes we can be become genuine fakes. We are burdened, or beset by temptation, or bound up by unbiblical thinking. Instead of pouring our hearts out to God and carefully sharing our burdens with our Christian family, we fake it. Like mindless bobble heads with pasted on fake smiles we nod robotically and tell people we are fine when what we desperately need is for God to help or change us.
While perusing a bookstore in Rome we noticed a Gypsy woman entreating the customers for ‘donations’ as she pointed toward the entrance. Outside a Gypsy man sat on the ground, his legs twisted and deformed looking, crutches propped behind him, while he called out in a plaintive sing-song voice for passers-by to pity him and drop some money in his upturned hat. Imagine my total shock and surprise when at 5:00 the clock chimed and the woman walked out of the store and joined the man who jumped up, grabbed his crutches and strode away! Fakes indeed!
But you can’t fool God
God hates it when we put on an act. The Pharisees were known for their great pomp and attention-getting devices in their outward worship. Christ condemned them multiple times for this and held up as an example those who acknowledged their weaknesses and humbly entreated God for help.
God is teaching me to be more open and genuine. He puts us together in the local body of Christ for corporate worship and mutual edification. I’m praying for God’s grace and help to both share my burdens and bear others’ burdens genuinely.